Seal of Empress of the Chin Dynasty–The First Seal of Empress in the Chinese History

Seal of Empress of the Chin Dynasy (B.C.221-B.C.206) ,Measurement: H.7.5cms,W.6cms.Depth 3.2cm, 165grams 

The seal is composed with three parts: The imposing pixie symbolizing the emperor, the lady kneeling on the back of the pixie, symbolizing the empress, the oval stand for the scripts of the seal. The style of the scripts on this seal conforms those of the Chin dynasty. Bronze seals ( around 2.2cm x 2.2cm) of the Palace Museum of Beijing ‘s collection. Especially the last stroke of the seal character of this seal    conforms  the typical lining of the Chin calligraphy( petite sigillaire 小篆 ) style, in particular, the character of 皇, conforms those found unearthed artifacts. The artifact consists aging elements such as diffusive markingsdeteriorate markingscleaving veins, and differential weathering to prove its antiquity. Based on the carving and characters’  styles of the jade seal and its antiquity of evidences, this jade seal is authenticated as genuine Seal of the Express from the Chin Dynasty.

The title of Emperor and  Empress were first appearing in the Chin Dynasty.This is the first  Seal of the Empress  in the Chinese history that makes this seal is an important artifact  and its value is beyond description. According to History of the Former Han Dynasty(漢書), composed by Ban Gu(班固),  First volume, List of High Ranking Officials of Royal Court(百官公卿表上): Zhan Shi詹事, Public official in the Chin Dynasty, Zhan Shi is  responsible for the affairs of the empress and princes’s families. Beginning Learning Record《初學記,compiled by Xu Jian(徐堅) in the Tang Dynasty, Volume 1 Inner Court Section (中宮部) Empress First (皇后第一) mentioned Chin had the title of Emperor, the first wife is called Empress. The Han Dynasty had followed this system. This is the historical record to prove that the Empress title first appeared in the Chin Dynasty and the present Seal of the Empress is the physical evidence to this historical record.

The medium has been tested with GIA Duplex II Refractometer, the refractive index is 1.61 spot reading. It is made of natural nephrite. The carving style of the mouth of the mythical animal is similar to that of the one of the Chin Dynasty. The low relief carving without open work is unique which is different from the other periods(such as Shang and Han). In addition to the scientific evidences of antiquity, one third of the object is fully calcified to form an evidence which seasoned collectors should recognize its genuineness at a first glance( the one eye item in Chinese context).    In terms of historical significance and rareness, the appraisal by taking market approach,   the Seal of Empress of the Chin Dynasty should be extremely  valuable.

Appraisal Indexes:
1. quality of jade: 10
2. rareness: 10
3. historical and cultural significance: 10
4. workmanship: 10
5. size:9
6. condition: 10

Provenance: Private collection, USA

Seal of Emperor with “Tang San Cai”

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H. 12 cm,W.10cm, D, 7cm, 1300 grams

The Tang Dynasty was an important period in the development of Chinese painting art. The painted drawing skills have been very mature.With rich colors and ornate to create the perfect visual effects, the Tang Dynasty has created various colorful painted works on different material, jade is one of them.

“Tang San Cai” is a colorful and beautiful pottery in the Tang Dynasty, tricolor glaze colors is not only three kinds! Sancai may have many different colors, because in the eyes of the Chinese people, the “three” means many, although Sancai may be advent in the Han Dynasty, “Tang San Cai” is still the most famous in the whole world. The style of dragon is similar to that of the Dragons on the robe of Portrait Scroll of Emperor Tang Taichong, collection of National Palace Museum in Taipei. The dragon carving style has shown the Tang Dynasty. The fire motif of Zoroastrianism has the characteristics of the western countries of the Tang Dynasty to reveal that fact that cultural and economic exchange between the west and the Tang Dynasty is common. Made of Hetian jade with green tone, this seal of the emperor with the characteristic of Tang San Cai is unique and rare in the Chinese jade seals. Antiquity evidences include differential weathering, cleaving vein and additive crystals. In addition, ancient tool mark is seen.

Appraisal Indexes:
1. quality of jade: 9
3. historical and cultural significance: 9
4. workmanship: 9
5. size:8
6. condition:10